Places TO EAT in Downtown middletown

These are kid-friendly options within walking distance of Kidcity.  For a more complete list of businesses in the downtown district, click here.  Also, check out Middletown restaurants on Yelp.


Within a block of Kidcity


The Cooking Company     350 Main Street, 860-347-0008

Delicious prepared foods, make-your-own salads & wraps, and a refrigerator-case full of tasty family meals (so you can take them home and then pull out of the oven, like you'd been in your kitchen all day instead of playing at Kidcity and strolling Middletown's Main Street.)   Oh, and yes, this is the same Cooking Company you know and love from Haddam/Tylerville and Killingworth.

grown     413 Main Street, 860-346-4769

Just steps from Kidcity, this organic juice bar is the source for fresh salads, smoothies, sandwiches & treats.  The Capri salad is a staff favorite (basil pesto, tuscan kale, romaine, vine ripe tomato, fresh mozz, marinated red onions & a balsamic reduction).  Grown is inside the Wesleyan RJ Julia Bookstore (take a shortcut by walking behind Kidcity's garage).

Ford News Diner     358 Main Street, 860-346-4655

Kay runs the grill at this classic and friendly lunch counter.  Let your kids spin on a stool while they watch their burgers and fries made right before their eyes.  Insider tip:  they close early - it’s just breakfast and lunch.


FroyoWorld    386 Main, 860-788-6063

Tart or sweet - make your own frozen yogurt masterpiece on Main.


Iguanas Ranas Taqueria     484 Main, 860-346-8630

Local foodies, families with small kids and college students - you’ll see everyone in town at this family-run Mexican restaurant, enjoying the super-fresh tacos, tortas and burritos.  For dessert, you can’t miss with a sugary plate of Tostapillas!


Typhoon   360 Main, 860-344-9667

Take advantage of this yummy Thai food on Main Street - including gluten-free options!


It’s Only Natural Market   575 Main, 860-346-1786

Convenient natural foods, groceries, a juice bar and deli counter with soups, sandwiches and desserts.  Great gluten-free options.  Plus, a US Post Office counter and a creative selection of cards and gifts. 


Klekolo World Coffee   181 Court St., 860-343-9444

A destination for those who take their coffee (and pastry) seriously.  Open *literally* every day since that's dedication!


Sweet Harmony Cafe   330 Main, 860-344-9646

From quiche to yummy muffins, this laid-back cafe has lots of tasty options for families.


PERK ON MAIN   386 Main, 860-788-2287

The newest coffee-kid-on-the-block, Perk on Main has opened a third location on our Main Street (you might already know and love them in Durham & Guilford).  Coffee, crepes and other eats in an environmentally-conscious shop.


One or Two Blocks from Kidcity


Amici’s   280 Main, 860-346-0075

Italian family dining with a “something for everyone” menu, including chicken fingers and fries for the kids.


Brew Bakers   169 Main, 860-852-0001

Like their neighbor to the north (Brew Bakers Cafe), fresh bagels and European pastries have made Brew Bakers a Middletown favorite.  Coffee drinks and sandwiches too.  Breakfast and lunch only.  


The Whey Station(ary)   544 Main, 860-740-2403

One of the region’s favorite food trucks (The Whey Station) finally has a sit-down joint, offering an indoor version of their famous gourmet grilled cheese. It’s family-friendly, but it’s also a bar.


It’s Only Natural Restaurant   606 Main, 860-346-9210

If you like it fresh and healthy, you’ll love It’s Only Natural restaurant, an upscale spot for vegans, vegetarians and adventurous carnivores.  They have a kids’ menu with little pizzas and alternative-spaghettios.  Insider tip:  The french fries are made with sweet potatoes.  Delicious and wickedly salty, but definitely orange.


LAn chi    505 Main  860-347-8885

Lan Chi is a sit-down Vietnamese restaurant with tasty noodle soups.  Their menu pays tribute to the home-cooking traditions of Southern Vietnam.


Tibetan Kitchen    574 Main, 860-343-3073

This tiny and friendly restaurant offers Tibetan home cooking as an art form.  Sample some momos (dumplings), hand-pulled noodles and sweet tea - and agree with the New York Times that Tibetan Kitchen is “Very Good”.  Accepts cash only.


Tschudin’s Chocolates   Riverview Center, 860-759-2222

This maker of chocolates and other sweets will WOW you with his creative designs.  Chocolate high heels, anyone?


Vecchitto’s Italian Ice   323 DeKoven Drive, 860-346-7301

If you are lucky enough to visit Middletown during the warm weather months, then Vecchitto’s should be open, serving their family-recipe lemon, almond, chocolate, watermelon and root beer Italian Ice, depending on the day and the whim.  The recent addition of Gelato makes your choice even more difficult.  Call ahead - usually open Memorial Day to Labor Day.


A Full Five-Minute Walk on Main Street


Eli Cannon’s Tap Room    695 Main, 860-347-3547    

KRUST PIZZA BAR   686 MAIN, 860-358-9816 and

Why are these bars on our list of kid-friendly eats?   Because these lively establishments fall into the category of “Bars where sometimes people bring kids because of the food and tolerant atmosphere”.  Eli’s (which specializes in beer) has a burgers/fries/salads menu and an outdoor patio that is especially kid-friendly.  Krust (which specializes in bourbon) has terrific brick-oven pizza.  Both can be loud and raucous and fun - you’ve been warned!  Might not be open for lunch, so call ahead.


Mondo’s   10 Main, 860-343-3300

Great pizza, panini and Italian specialties, enjoyed by families, college students, and folks watching the game at the bar.


NoRA Cupcake Company   700 Main, 860-788-3150

This is not your grandmother’s cupcake shop (unless your grandma is a skateboard punk rocker).  We’re sure you’ll find something to like here among the Irish Car Bomb, Fluffernutter, Chocolate Zucchini and Raspberry Lemonade cupcakes.  Gluten free and vegan options, often.


PERKATORY   725 Main, 860-788-2029

In an alley across from O’Rourke’s Diner and alongside Eli Cannon’s, you’ll find Perkatory Coffee Roasters proclaiming “Death Before Decaf”! Amid the laptops and occasional artist events, you might find they’re having a visit from the elusive (and fine) Rolling Doughnut bakery folks, so call ahead on the weekends to see if it’s your lucky day.


O’Rourke’s Diner   728 Main, 860-346-6101

We love O’Rourke’s so much that we created a mini-O’Rourke’s for play in our Main Street Exhibit.  Unlike the diner in our exhibit, O’Rourke’s does not serve plastic food.  Their wildly adventurous menu has earned them a national reputation, including features on “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” & Gourmet Magazine.  Insider Tip:  On weekends, be prepared for a line.

The Tavern at the Armory (at the Inn at Middletown)    70 Main, 860-854-6333

When you’ve got lots of grown-ups to please, and cooperative little ones, we suggest the Tavern at the Armory, serving New England specialties like Clam Chowder, Bread Pudding and a decent kid’s menu.


Are these the only places to eat downtown?

There are lots of other choices - you’ll find them in the Downtown Directory.  We have sandwich shops, bars that serve burgers and lots of international restaurants:  Indian, Japanese, Vietnamese, Asian fusion, Thai, Mexican, Italian, Spanish/Tapas, Ethiopian & more. 


Where can I find familiar chain restaurants and fast food?

For the most part, our Main Street is a pretty independent place.  We don’t have national chains within walking distance of Kidcity, except for Dunkin’ Donuts and Subway.  But if you drive East up Washington Street, you can find McDonalds, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, etc., etc., etc.